@chimaeragryph
[cat nonsense]

30s. Queer as in tired. Feel free to spam like my reblogs or go through old posts in my tags, I don't mind at all. Tag me in lizard and catboy memes.

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2022-08-19 20:32:50

    As is tradition with Dracula Daily, let me give you today’s Cultural Lesson Based On Today’s Entry. Let’s talk about money.

    See, if you’re thinking Dracula and the characters are handling what we see today as British money, don’t be fooled! Dracula is set in the 1890s, and they use an entirely different money system to what we use now, it just seems on the surface that it’s the same.

    For context, if you didn’t know, Britain uses pounds (£) and pence (p) as the currency now, with 100p to £1. This is called decimalisation, and has been in practice since the 1970s. Before then, we were the last country in the world to still use the Roman monetary system.

    In the Victorian era, there were 3 used measurements of currency: Pounds (L), Shillings (s) and pence (d), which was written in that order: l.s.d, so a sink in a shop may list the price as 1.7.2, which would be 1 pound, 7 shillings and 2 pence.

    Now lets break those down a little more. There are 240 pennies to the pound, and 12 pence to the shilling. That makes 20 shillings to the pound. Most working class laborers would be using shillings as their highest coin in day-to-day living. You could get a pint of beer for a couple of pence. A pound was an incredible amount of money to your average person (maybe less so to the fancy characters of Dracula).

    But I want to talk about the coins.

    See, a penny was not the lowest coin in circulation. That was a farthing, which was worth ¼ (a quarter) of a penny. Then next was a half penny (or ha’penny if you prefer). Of course there was the penny. Then there was a two pence (tuppence) and a three pence (thrupence) piece. Then you had your half shilling (sixpence, pronounced more like sixpunce, with a ‘u’ rather than an ‘e’), and the shilling itself (twelve pence, remember? Also known colloquially as ‘bob’). Then you had the florin, which was 2 shillings exactly (24 pence). From there you had your half crown, which was worth 2 shillings and six pence, for a total of 30 pence (though you’d never call it that), and then a crown, which was 5 shillings. From there the next step is the half-sovereign, worth half a pound (120 pence, or 10 shillings), and finally the gold sovereign coin, worth £1, or 240 pennys, or 20 shillings.

    Yes, that’s genuinely the method of money these characters are using. Some old people insist it was easier than the current system.

    Here’s some more fun money facts in case they come up later!

    A guinea is a pound and a shilling (1.1.0, or 252 pence), and was used to make things seem a little cheaper to wealthy buyers. It’s used from time to time in Victorian books so it’s worth knowing.

    The correct way to read out prices is ‘[x] and [y]’, so say you were selling something and wanted a shilling and fivepence for it, you’d ask for “1 and 5”. This is often used for the stereotypical cost of a half a crown, so when someone in a period drama asks for “2 and 6”, what they’re asking for is 2 shillings and sixpence.

    There is a fairly obscure coin that I’m not sure was in circulation at this time which was nicknamed ‘The Barmaid’s grief’, it was only used for a few years. This was worth 4 shillings and was the same shape and (very nearly) size as a crown (5 shillings). So people would buy a pint of beer, the barmaid would pick up the coin in a hurry and not realise that it wasn’t a crown, and give 4 shillings back along with change from a shilling for the beer. So people made money from buying beer. It was not a good time to be a barmaid.

    some dracula historical context:

    we all love making fun of the characters for being oblivious to some plain old vampire-itis, but even readers of the time might have not picked up that it was dracula at work!

    Up to this point in the book we haven't seen vampires feed with explicit physical evidence of the deed explained, so there's no reason for a Victorian reader to think the two holes are related (initially). But more than that, Lucy's "sad pale fragile lady" disease was already *incredibly common* at the time.

    Tuberculosis (or consumption, as it was called) was a very common disease, and in terms of Victorian literature, a romantic protagonist might, as a plot point, suddenly become ~pale and weak, with a tendency to swoon onto conveniently placed couches, so delicate, we must protect this lovely little lady~

    ...and so on.

    Stoker here is relying on his audience's knowledge of literary convention to disguise dracula's movements in the westenra household. TV Tropes even as a page for "Victorian Novel Disease" (warning: page probably contains spoilers for Dracula) which says:

    When the lower class is poor and thin and haggard looking, the nobility commissions portraits depicting themselves...with rosy cheeks and dimpled arms...However, when the economy stabilizes and the poor are able to be plump and rosy-cheeked, then...Women become diminutive, frail...and prone to fainting spells and headaches.

    Interestingly (to me, who has previously posted about Jonathan's fitting into the tropes of the female gothic), that paragraph is instantly followed by:

    Alternatively, if you experience something extremely harrowing or frightening, you can expect to fall into a subtype of [Victorian Novel Disease], where you might ‘faint from exertion’ then spend several months in bed beset by a mysterious half-physiological, half-psychological conundrum of a condition: see Brain Fever.

    Conclusion: Jonathan and Lucy are both suffering from Victorian Novel Disease, which in the context of this being a horror/suspense novel, is startlingly plot-relevant instead of just fashionable.

    Lucy's mother's heart condition is an interesting writing mechanic.

    In terms of horror it is the equivalent of the protagonist seeing that they don't have cell service when they get to the creepy cabin in the woods. It establishes why a character isn't taking the apparently most logical way to get help.

    With everything Mina is describing, it would be reasonable to get a doctor. But, with the context of Mrs. Westenra having a weak heart, we have a reason to not raise the alarm and to not bring in a bunch of doctors. The underlying fear that too great a shock will kill Lucy's mother, it makes sense that Mina is so hesitant to make a big deal about things.

    maxknightley

    I want someone to make a parody Soulslike where the central joke is that the setting is just the real world with more combat

    maxknightley

    You’ve earned some dollars, have you, worker? Well… before you go spending them all, you should keep in mind. In this world… money and power are one and the same.

    (Whenever you rest at a quick-service restaurant, you can spend Dollars to level up, increasing your attributes. The number of Dollars required increases with each level.)

    maxknightley

    Since making this post I have received so many comments saying “oh like Yakuza” “oh like Scott Pilgrim.” No. Yakuza and Scott Pilgrim are beat-em-ups set in the modern world, with a layer of comedy and exaggeration on top of it. That’s not Souls. The mechanics are somewhat different and the vibes are completely incomparable.

    I’m talking about a game where you spawn in with nothing but a t-shirt, some boxer shorts, and a shitty old baseball bat. I’m not talking about a game where you can go to a 7-11, I’m talking about a game where an old woman talks to you for five uninterrupted minutes about the history and mythic importance of 7-11. If I’m not fighting off packs of feral dogs and dodge rolling around an actual M4 Sherman tank I Will Not Buy Your Game. I should be able to leave messages that say “Towers ahead, therefore, be wary of bush” and receive ten thousand appraisals for it

    benfoldsone

    OP I am giving you a million dollars in my mind

    faewrite

    i made a 2-part uquiz calledWhich Shakespeare character are you? and it has 50 possible results.  The first quiz puts you into one of 5 groups and links you to the group quiz that has 10 different characters each. Tag your results. :)

    faewrite

    the funniest part of this is seeing people in the tags who want to get hamlet and get something from a play they’ve never read and they’re like UMM IM EMO??? i HAVE to be HAMLET idk who Edmund even is and I’m like… sweetie…. you’re Edmund….

    v-as-in-victor

    Group 4: Agents of Chaos - Benedick Yes, I will take that!

    adelphicoracle

    Excellent result! You rule with your witty banter and possibly being portrayed by David Tennant

    cipheramnesia

    Bad Bitches, Cleopatra, but honestly just getting recognized is enough.

    keepcalmandcarriefischer

    https://vm.tiktok.com/ZTdQuxw52/

    I think I found my new favorite rabbit hole. This voice actor does Shakespeare scenes in a southern accent and I need to see the whole damn play. Absolutely beautiful

    mother-entropy

    if you're not from the us american south, there's some amazing nuances to this you may have missed. i can't really describe all of them, because i've lived here my whole life and a lot of the body language is sort of a native tongue thing. the body language is its own language, and i am not so great at teaching language. i do know i instinctively sucked on my lower teeth at the same time as he did, and when he scratched the side of his face, i was ready to take up fucking arms with him.

    but y'all. the way he said "brutus is an honourable man" - each and every time it changed just a little. it was the full condemnation Shakespeare wanted it to be. it started off slightly mock sincere. barely trying to cover the sarcasm. by the end...it wasn't a threat, it was a promise.

    christ, he's good.

    anais-ninja-bitch

    the eliding of “you all” to “y’all” while still maintaining 2 syllables is a deliberate and brilliant act of violence. “bear with me” said exactly like i’ve heard it at every funeral. the choices of breaking and re-establishing of eye contact. the balance of rehearsed and improvised tone. A+++ get this man a hollywood contract.

    ruffboijuliaburnsides

    Get this man a starring role as Marc Antony in a southern adaptation of this show PLEASE.

    amodernjunecleaver

    This man is fantastic. 💕

    finnglas

    The thing that just destroys me about this, though -- we think of Shakespearean language as being high-cultured, and intellectual, and somewhat inaccessible. And I know people think of Southerners as being ill-educated (which...let's be fair, most are, but not the way it's said). But that whole speech, unaltered, is so authentically Southern. And the thing is: Leaning into that language really amps the mood, in metalanguage. I'm not really sure how to explain it except... like... "Thrice" is not a word you hear in common speech...unless you're in the South and someone is trying to Make A Fucking Point.

    Anyway. This was amazing and I want a revival of Shakespeare As Southern Gothic.

    thornheart-needs-a-break

    One of the lovely things about this, and one of the reasons it works so well, is that from what we can piece together of how Shakespeare was originally pronounced, it leans more towards an American southern accent than it does towards a modern British RP.

    In addition, in the evolution of the English language in america, the south has retained many of the words, expressions, and cadences from the Renaissance/Elizabethan English spoken by the original British colonists.

    One of the biggest examples of this is that the south still uses “O!”/“Oh!” In sentences, especially in multi-tone and multi-syllable varieties. We’ve lost that in other parts of the country (except in some specific pocket communities). But in the south on the whole? Still there. People in California or Chicago don’t generally say things like “why, oh why?” Or “oh bless your heart” or “Oh! Now why you gotta do a thing like that?!” But people from the south still do.

    I teach, direct, and dramaturg Shakespeare for a living. When people are struggling with the “heightened” language, especially in “O” heavy plays like R&J and Hamlet, a frequent exercise I have them do is to run the scene once in a southern accent. You wouldn’t believe the way it opens them up and gives their contemporary brains an insight into ways to use that language without it being stiff and fake. Do the Balcony scene in a southern accent- you’ll never see it the same way again.

    This guy is also doing two things that are absolutely spot-on for this speech:

    First, he’s using the rhetorical figures Shakespeare gave him! The repetition of “ambition” and “Brutus is an honorable man”, the logos with which he presents his argument, the use of juxtaposition and antitheses (“poor have cried/caesar hath wept”, etc). You would not believe how many RADA/Carnegie/LAMDA/Yale trained actors blow past those, and how much of my career I spend pointing it out and making them put it back in.

    Second, he’s playing the situation of the speech and character exactly right. This speech is hard not just because it’s famous, but because linguistically and rhetorically it’s a better speech than Brutus’ speech and in the context of the play, Brutus is the one who is considered a great orator. Brutus’ speech is fiery passion and grandstanding, working the crowd, etc. Anthony is not a man of speeches (“I am no orator, as Brutus is; But, as you know me all, a plain blunt man”) His toastmaster skills are not what Brutus’ are, but he speaks from his heart (his turn into verse in this scene from Brutus’ prose is brilliant) and lays out such a reasonable, logical argument that the people are moved anyway. I completely believe that in this guy’s performance. A plain, blunt, honest speaker. Exactly what Anthony should be.

    TLDR: Shakespeare is my job and this is 100% a good take on this speech.

    rainaramsay

    definitely one of the challenges I have with reading Shakespeare is that it sounds so weird to me. “The good is oft interr’d with their bones”?? Who talks like that?

    Well,,, rednecks. Despite being Elizabethan English, none of this is really out of character for a man with that accent; southern american English has retained not only (I am told) the accent of Shakespeare, and the “Oh!” speech patterns, but also so many of the little linguistic patterns: parenthetic repetition (“so are they all - all honorable men”), speaking formally when deeply emotional, getting more and more sarcastic and passive-aggressive as time goes on, etc.